A.R.T./New York provides a variety of financial resources to help theatres realize their creative potential.

The Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes design enhancement Fund


Downloads | Criteria for Evaluation | Required Documents | Tips for Applicants


The following downloads are useful guides and templates necessary to complete the application. 

These downloads do not constitute all of the documents that you must provide in your application. Please read all information below.



The panel is asked to keep the following three criteria in mind when evaluating each proposal. As you review your narrative and supporting documents, please consider how well your company’s proposal addresses these three areas:

Use of Funds –Is the enhanced project budget clearly articulated and does it fall within the parameters of the grant? Is the budget realistic, in the estimation of the panel? Are the enhanced and non-enhanced versions of the project clearly explained? Will the enhancement have a discernable impact on the designer and their growth as an artist? Will the production itself, and the audience’s experience, be made stronger and fuller by the design enhancement?

Project Logistics  – Is the production timeframe reasonable and achievable? If funds are awarded, is it realistic that the enhanced design will be implemented as described? Will the production move forward with or without funding, or is the application underwriting the original design itself rather than an enhancement?

Organizational Identity – Does the proposal clearly define the company’s mission and programming? Does the production for which the company seeks funding seem in sync with the stated mission?  Does the company distinguish itself from other applicants in serving a unique community of artists and audience members?


  • Narrative Statement (4 pages maximum) Download Guidelines
  • 3-Year Operating Budget (Download Template) for your company. This budget should include four columns: your most recently completed fiscal year actuals; your current budget and year-to-date actuals; and the next fiscal year projection.
    • Use the Budget Form template provided and print to PDF format to ensure it fits on one page.
    • Please round your numbers to the nearest dollar.
    • If your theatre program is only a portion of your programming, please include a separate budget for the theatre program.
    • Please DO NOT INCLUDE funds from the Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Fund grant in this budget.
  • Budget Notes (one page maximum) for line items that require additional clarification or explanation. 
    • Please indicate the fiscal year in which the production for which funding is being requested will occur.
    • Any line item that changes by more than 10% (up or down) between fiscal years. 
    • Please provide details for both earned and contributed income, including projected ticket sales, individual and board contributions, and indicate secured and pending institutional funding.
    • Please explain the cause of a deficit, and especially take the time to explain plans to address year-over-year deficits, if necessary.
  • Full Production Budget (one page maximum) including income and expenses for the proposed project. This budget should not be exclusive to the design element(s) for which you are requesting funds. Please use two columns in the budget: the left column should include the original design budget, and the right column should indicate where enhancement funds would be applied if awarded. You have the option to use the provided Production Budget Template.  
  • Production Budget Notes (one page maximum) detailing secured and pending income, earned income projections, and expense details. This section is the opportunity to show research and comparables that clarify the enhancement budget against the original design budget.
  • A brief biography of the designer(s) (one page maximum) who will be working on the funded elements.A copy of your 501(c)(3) IRS determination letter (one page).
  • Your company’s performance history (two pages maximum) for your most recently completed and current seasons. Use the prepared Performance History template (download 2019 template here). We strongly suggest noting if the designer(s) working on your proposed production have also worked on any past productions.
  • OPTIONAL: You may include up to TWO additional attachments (6 pages total) consisting of materials that will enhance the panel’s understanding of the proposed design, and the work of your designer(s). Images, renderings, recordings, and other information about the current and enhanced designs are very welcome. Please note that these attachments are completely optional, and past panels have funded many proposals without additional documents.
    • Panel books are distributed to the panels digitally, and supplementary materials are also viewed on a TV in the room on the day of the panel. If you would like to submit video, please upload a document with the video link no more than 3 minutes long. 
    • Attachments uploaded through the online application are printed black and white on 8.5" x 11" paper, with a three-hole punch on the left side.
    • Please limit uploaded attachments to no more than three pages each.
    • Please DO NOT provide a website link to the design samples.
    • If you do not have the additional attachments in digital form, please contact Corinne Woods for additional instructions at A.R.T./New York, ATTN: Corinne Woods, 520 Eighth Avenue, Suite 319, New York, NY 10018 and ensure that they are postmarked on or prior to the grant deadline. 
    • If you have a large materials, bring ONE copy of large scaled design sketches, models, CDS, DVDs, or other work samples from your designer(s) that will be reviewed in the office. These materials will be returned in early December, but the applicants have to come pick them up at the office.


  • Applicants should not rely on past accolades or assume that panelists have any preexisting knowledge of their work. Panelists are asked to rely only on what the company has shared about itself.
  • The most successful applicants will offer a clear breakdown of how the funds will be spent, not simply add a lump sum to a particular budget line item.
  • The panel does not review applications with any aesthetic criteria in mind, and therefore a wide range of design elements and concepts are welcome to apply for this grant. The panel will focus on the feasibility of the project and impact of the grant.
  • A lack of funding should not impair the production as originally envisioned by the design team. Put another way, the enhancement should be described in positive terms, and should not devalue the creativity and feasibility of the original design concept(s) for the production.
  • The panel carefully considers whether applicants will have enough time to implement the design enhancement. Therefore, while all projects occurring during 2018 are eligible, applicants with projects in January must show they have sufficient time to execute the specific design enhancement requested.
  • The purchase of equipment is possible through this fund. However, requests for equipment purchase must address why purchasing is better than renting, how purchasing it will specifically serve this production and enhance the designer's experience, and what the cost of renting is, in comparison.
  • A.R.T./New York offers applicants the opportunity to received feedback from a Programs Staff Member on their narrative in advance of the grant deadline. For information about Narrative Review, click here.
  • Info sessions reviewing the grant criteria and application will be offered in person and online. For more information on scheduled info sessions and to register, click here.


For more information about this program, please contact Programs Coordinator Corinne Woods, at [email protected] or (212) 244-6667 ext. 221.


The Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Fund was made possible by generous funding from the Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes Foundation.


Header: Irish Repertory Theatre's production of Finian's Rainbow. Photo by Carol Rosegg.